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Jacqueline Kennedy Watch and Jewelry

28 Apr

Jacqueline Kennedy Watch and Jewelry

The epitome of grace, sophistication, and elegance, Jacqueline Kennedy was then and still remains a fashion icon. Now you can have her look for a lot less than you'd think thanks to a new jewelry collection replicating some of her classic watch and jewelry pieces.

From QVC: For one thousand days, she graced the White House. America fell in love with her quiet sophistication and regal elegance. Jacqueline Kennedy, renowned for tasteful designer clothing and jewelry, is still an inspiration. Experience her timeless style with this impeccable collection of fashion jewelry featuring reproductions of the original pieces worn by the late First Lady of Camelot.

Here are a few of my picks from the collection:

Jacqueline Kennedy Goldtone Oval Case Watch with Crystal Bezel

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Jacqueline Kennedy 17" Triple Strand Simulated Pearl Necklace

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Jacqueline Kennedy Reproduction Aventurine Drop Earrings

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JK photo from: factio-magazine

Cartier Brings Back Love Bracelet

25 Apr

Cartier Brings Back Love Bracelet

It's baaaccckkk….Maybe you don't remember this jewelry line from Cartier so it may be totally new to you, but they are bringing back the Love Bracelet. This was a favorite of celebrities back in the late 1960s and today's famous faces are still drawn to this unique and fun jewelry design.

From a company press release: Today, the "Love Bracelet" remains the world's most celebrated and desirable wrist ornament.

The continuing popularity of the bracelet led to the development of additional products in this motif, starting with the "Precious Love Bracelet" (with diamonds) in 1979, and followed by the "Love Ring" (1983), the "Love Cufflinks" (1984), and the "Love Earrings" (1985).

New customers every day continued to discover for themselves the special wit and style of the Love Bracelet. And, at the same time, another whole generation of celebrity wrists appeared throughout the '70s and '80's "locked up" in this famous Cartier shackle: Barbara Streisand, Diana Ross, Joan Collins, Jane Seymour, Princess Diana, Linda Evans, Lionel Ritchie, Kenny Rogers, Reggie Jackson, John McEnroe, Elton John, Tori Spelling, Jane Fonda, Liza Minelli… the list goes on and on. In 1983 when Tina Turner made her spectacular coming back on the rock and soul stage as "a lionness" , Tina Tuner appeared with the Love bracelet at her wrist as "her only jewel she loved." Elton John used to wear it by wearing several bangles on his wrist in the diamond versions and Madonna wore it in the very early years of her fame.

Sharon Stone also is seen wearing the Love Bracelet in the 1998 movie " Sphere" directed by Barry Levinson.

Today the Cartier Love bracelet continues to be showcased on the wrist of fashionable clients as well as celebrities including: Jamie Fox, Mary J. Blige, Lindsay Lohan and most recently, Michelle Williams.

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And, of course, if you get the bracelet you also have to get the screw driver so that your lover can, well, put on your bracelet for you. The screws in the bracelet really work and that's how you attach it to your wrist.

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Some Earring History

23 Feb

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Who would have thought there is so much history behind a simple pair of earrings? But, of course, most jewelry fanatics know how important earrings are for a total look. It seems the Egyptians and Romans agreed.

From "All You Ever Wanted To Know About Earrings But Were Afraid to Ask" written by John Lewis of Love2Have and Earrings UK.

"The oldest earrings ever found by archaeologists were discovered in royal graves in Iraq and date back to around 2500 BC. Gold, silver and bronze hoop earrings have also been found dating back to 2000 BC in Crete. [...]

In the 2nd century during the Roman Empire, earrings became a popular way for rich women to show off their wealth and the use of precious gemstones in the jewellery also became more popular."

Baubles, Bangles and Beads

21 Feb

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If you are near Yale University, you may want to swing by to a look at what sounds like a fabulous exhibit: "Baubles, bangles, and Beads: American Jewelry From Yale University, 1700-2005."

From Courant.com: "Yale doesn't have enough room to display jewelry's elaborate and extensive past, but with "Baubles, Bangles, and Beads," Yale University Art Gallery curators hope to chronicle the roles jewelry has played in American culture – from a statement about personal taste, to an indication of a person's affiliations, to the social ritual of mourning.

Many of the pieces in the exhibition – the first of its kind in the gallery's history – have never been shown to the public.

"Everyone has a personal connection to jewelry, and because of the recognition of that personal connection, it sparks curiosity," said Anna Hammond, deputy director of the gallery. "Jewelry weaves in the history of American culture in a very individual way.

"Beyond the value and history of the objects in and of themselves, it's how people look at them and respond to them that makes this such a popular exhibit."

For more about the exhibit, visit the gallery's web page.

A Ring and a Story

9 Feb

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I love a good story, especially when it involves mysterious antique jewelry. Here's the story of a many who found an old ring in a jewelry box that had been out of site for 77 years. Amazingly enough, Tom Austin was able to track down the original owner of the ring; however, it is still a mystery as to how the ring ended up in the jewelry box:

"Somehow a gold chain, an earring or a Timex seldom come with a story, but it's hard to find a ring that doesn't have a story — a little story maybe, but almost always a story.

Tom Austin was counting on that. The potential of a good story was the thing that caught the attention of the 96-year-old resident of The Hermitage on Westwood Avenue when his nephew's wife called from Louisiana a few months back to ask his help in solving a mystery involving a ring — a ring with origins in Richmond, as it turned out."

Read more: "A man's determination solves a ring's mystery"

Swarovski Travels the Globe

30 Jan

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Maybe you're lucky enough to live in or near one of the cities that will be hosting this fabulous exhibit by Swarovski:

"Swarovski acquired the Atelier Marangoni in 1999 and prevented the collection of Maria Callas's stage jewelry from being dispersed all around the world. After years of restoration work the spotlight is once more shining on these masterpieces, some of which are more than 50 years old. The exhibition has so far had more than 2.2 million visitors. After Vienna it will travel to Florence and then to Salzburg, Berlin, London, Tokyo and New York."

Here's a look at some of the pieces for those of us who live in no-where-ville.

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Read more: Maria Callas and Swarovski Stage JewelryLooks like the next stop is Prague:
Exhibition of Swarovski jewelry opens in Prague

Where Do Birthstones Come From?

17 Jan

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Goldsmith, Richard Alan, has another great article, this time concerning the origins of birthstones. It's something I never really thought much about before, but now that you mention it, where did this gemstone and birthday tradition come from?

" If we could go back in time about 2,000 years, the answer would be easy.

First, we just locate a man named Aaron who was the first high priest in the most glorious position of the Jewish faith. He also happens to be Moses' brother.

Most gemstone aficionados agree that birthstones originated with the breast plate of Aaron (it is said the design was created by the "ultimate designer" and presented to Moses). The breast plate contained 12 gemstones that signified the 12 tribes of Israel, although it is mentioned in the bible the exact gems get lost in translation and no two "experts" can agree on the exact 12 gemstones the plate contained."

Alan also offers a birthstone list in his article, " Birthstones and amulets"

I've also compiled my own list here: " Birthstone List"

Belgium Says Bye to Diamonds

2 Jan

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Antwerp, Belgium, at one time one of the diamond polishing capitals of the world, is now seeing its trade diminish as more and more work is exported to India where diamonds can be cut and polished for " one-fifth of the labor costs." Once a cottage industry in Antwerp where as many as 25,000 diamonds experts worked from their homes in 1970, now less than 800 gemologists live in the city.

From the International Herald Tribune article, " In a Belgian city, twilight for diamonds:"

" On office doors, nameplates like Bernstein, Goldberg and Greenspan have been gradually replaced by those of Shah, Jhaveri and Gandhi.

Indian dealers began arriving in the 1970s, drawn by the lucrative trade and the easy Belgium immigration process.

"The Indians sent their workers here to learn and improve their techniques, and then they opened their own businesses," said Langerman, who, like some other Belgian diamond dealers, has opened a plant of his own in India. Indians handle two-thirds of the $26 billion diamond trade in Antwerp, while the once-dominant share of the Jewish dealers has been reduced to just a fourth.

This city, with its respected grading laboratory and four diamond exchanges, remains the world center for uncut diamonds, a domain of security guards, bulletproof cars and doormen in body armor."

Russian Necklace at Discount Price

23 Nov

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I wrote about this not too long ago in my post " Diamonds from Russia with Love," and it looks like the predictions where pretty close. Rather than 1.9 million it was sold for 1.5 million. This diamond necklace, according to Sotheby's is the most historically significant necklace they've auctioned off in 30 years. They wouldn't say who purchased this necklace, once worn by Katherine the Great, other than that she was also a lady of noble birth. At least this time, the articles I found on line offered a few pictures of the finished piece. I've been dying to know what this thing looked like! Not something you'd wear grocery shopping, but amazing none the less.

Read more:
Imperial necklace sells for $1.5m

High End Jewelry Makes Hip Hop Stars

21 Sep

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Or so says some of the rap stars interviewed for the new book on bling, aptly titled Bling Bling: Hip Hop's Crown Jewels. Written by Minhya Oh, who is a former MTV news writer, per Publisher's Weekly the book traces the connection between bling and the music industry:

" Rap musicians' obsession with outlandish jewelry, the "bling" of the title, is celebrated by pop culture reporter Oh in her first book. Rapper Big Daddy Kane tells her, "It's all about getting people to look at you," and the photos in this slick, urban volume prove his point. From huge "dookie" chains to jewel-encrusted Jesus heads, from platinum and gold teeth to the $40,000 bracelet Method Man bought for his three-year-old daughter, the artists of hip hop make it clear in numerous interviews that the acquisition of costly jewelry is a major part of becoming a star. Oh interviews many of rap's bling-obsessed heavyweights, including 50 Cent, Lil Jon, Chuck D and RZA, but bypasses artists, such as Eminem, who maintain a lower-key appearance. Most of the interviews are laced with profanities and reveal little except that the artist digs bling bling. When more serious topics are raised, such as the exploitation of Africans in the mining of diamonds, or what kind of message the rap world's materialistic vision sends to its audience, Oh doesn't probe. For example, when ordained minister Run, of Run-D.M.C. proclaims his affection for bling by saying, "God wants you to have everything you want to have," Oh declines to question him further. Slickly designed and full of unique content, this book will find a welcome home next to any hip-hop CD collection."

List price is $27.50 US, but Amazon.com has it for $18.15 US.

Sources: New Book Discusses Fascination With Bling, Jewelry; Publisher's Weekly; Amazon.com